Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from November, 2010

Retro Classics ~ Beef Stroganoff ~

Retro Classics.


It is funny how food goes in and out of style. Beef Stroganoff was hugely popular in the 70's and hasn't been popular since. A few years ago, I was the chef of a small restaurant, only open at lunch time. We would have a different special every day. A few times, we made Beef Stroganoff. Out of all the specials that we made, it was  hands-down the most popular special we ever had. It turns out people LOVE Beef Stroganoff. I was pretty surprised.  I know  there are a lot of Beef Stroganoff lovers out there. You know who you are.

Beef Stroganoff
(serves 4)

a couple of tablespoons butter
8 oz. tender, lean steak, sliced in 1/2 inch x 2 inch strips across the grain
2 cups button mushrooms, sliced
1 large shallot, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp, paprika
2 Tbsp. chopped sweet gherkins
2 Tbsp. Tomato paste
2 Tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2  cups beef stock
2 tsp. cornstarch, blend with a little of the beef stock
1 cup sour cream

hot cooked pasta, such as egg no…

Baby it's cold outside~ Staying warm with Ham, Potato and Cabbage Soup

Ham, Potato and Cabbage Soup
(6-8 servings)

Ham Stock
1 large, meaty ham bone
12 cups of cold water
1 Tbsp salt
1 carrot, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and left whole
1 Tbsp whole peppercorns
1 tsp thyme
2 bay leaves

In a large pot, bring mixture to a boil, Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer uncovered 2 hours. Strain and reserve ham bone and stock. Pull ham off bone, discard fat and chop into bite-size pieces.

Soup
1/2 onion, diced
2 large carrots, diced
2 ribs celery, diced
4 small russet potatoes, peeled and grated
1/2 small green cabbage, finely chopped
2-3 cups diced cooked ham
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
8 cups Ham Stock
Salt and Pepper

In a large pot, heat a small amount of vegetable oil. Add onions, carrots and celery. Saute over medium-low heat until tender. Add remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce heat and cook for 2 hours, or until vegetables are very soft and potatoes are broken up.Season to taste. Serve with…

Cranberry Maple Rice Pudding with Candied Pecans

When I was a kid, my Dad didn't do much cooking. He did have one specialty.....Rice Pudding. I have memories of him standing over the stove, stirring a big pot of the stuff. His version was pretty basic ... milk, rice, sugar, and vanilla, but sooo good. When the pudding was finished cooking, he would pour the whole thing in a huge yellow bowl and then we would wait.....and wait for the rice pudding to get ice-cold. Out of the five of us,  my Dad, my brother Dean and I were the only ones that liked  rice pudding.  My mom and my brother Darren wouldn't touch it if their lives depended on it. They didn't know what they were missing.

Cranberry Maple Rice Pudding
3/4 cup white rice, uncooked
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups water
4 cups Vanilla Almond Milk
1/4 cup Maple Syrup
1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup dried cranberries

In a medium heavy-bottom pot stir in water, rice and salt. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and cook until most of the water h…

Bacon and Potato Frittata

I made this frittata the other day for breakfast, and I liked it so much I made it for dinner the next day.  I like the fact that everything is cooked together in one pan, so clean-up is a piece of cake. I put a home-made bell pepper relish in mine, other good substitutions would be sun dried tomato pesto or basil pesto, salsa or a spicy chutney or roasted red peppers. This is also a great way to hide leftover cooked vegetables or meat, such as turkey.

Bacon and Potato Frittata
serves 4

4 slices bacon, sliced in 1/2 inch strips
1 small onion, diced
1 large russet potato, cooked and diced
8  large eggs, scrambled
1/4 cup bell pepper relish
1/2 cup grated cheese, such as Cheddar or Swiss
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350*F. Cook bacon over med-low heat in an  8 inch oven proof skillet. While bacon is cooking, add the onion. Cook until bacon is crisp and onion is softened. Remove from pan, and drain off excess grease from pan. Add potato to pan and season with  salt and pepper. Cook p…

Sesame Noodle Salad with Carrot-Sesame Vinaigrette

Well, where have you been all my life? Now THAT  is one good-looking salad, don't ya  think?



This one hits all the marks-- light yet satisfying, healthy, well balanced flavours, crunchy, fresh  and  drop-dead gorgeous, This one  just knocks it right out of the ball park.

The  pureed, cooked carrot adds a viscosity to the dressing without adding a ton of oil. It also adds a nice sweetness to it.

Try it.....I think you are going to like it.

Sesame Noodle Salad with Carrot-Sesame Vinaigrette
(This makes a mountain of salad, recipe can be cut in half.)

Salad:
1 16 oz. pkg. Rice Stick noodles
1 1/2 cups shredded, cooked chicken, bones and skin removed
1 large peeled carrot, with a vegetable peeler, peel carrot into long, thin ribbons
1 rib celery, sliced very thinly on an angle
1 cup pea pods, ends and tough string removed, sliced thinly on an angle
1/2 red bell pepper, julienned
4 green onions, trimmed and sliced thinly on an angle, save a bit for garnish
1 bunch fresh cilantro, chopp…

Spicy Peanut Chicken with Cilantro Rice

I think this dish is the perfect blend of sweet, salty, spicy and sour flavours.

Stir frying is  actually very simple,  but you do have to be organized. Have all ingredients ready to go before you start.

Spicy Peanut Chicken with Cilantro Rice

Vegetable or peanut oil
1 large chicken breast, boneless, cut into bite size pieces
1 large carrot, halved lengthwise and cut thinly on an angle
1 cup pea pods, ends and tough string removed, sliced on an angle into two or  three pieces
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped or sliced
4 green onions, cut in to 1 inch pieces
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 inch piece of fresh ginger, minced

Sauce:
1/4 cup peanut butter
3 Tbsp. soy sauce (gluten-free)
2 tsp cornstarch
1 or more tsp. Sriracha hot sauce
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
juice and zest of one lime

1/2 cup roasted peanuts, plus extra for garnish
Hot cooked Rice, cook rice according to instructions, stir in a handful of chopped fresh cilantro to cooked rice

Heat a small amount of oil in a  large wok over m…

Spinach and Ham topped with Poached Eggs.

I think most people fall into one of two categories: The sweet breakfast lover and the savoury breakfast lover. I definitely fall into the latter category. Which is weird, given how much I love anything sweet. I just can't deal with it first thing in the morning. This is my favorite thing to have for breakfast, I absolutely  love it!





Spinach and Ham topped with Poached Eggs

1/2 onion, finely chopped
diced ham, about 6 oz. (Canadian Bacon can be substituted, if desired)
three or four big handfuls of washed,  baby spinach, tough stems removed
salt and pepper

1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
4 eggs

Fill a pan with  at least 2 -3 inches of water. Add vinegar. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. The hardest part of poaching eggs is getting the water to the perfect temperature. Tiny bubbles should be coming to the surface, but you do not want a rolling boil. Break each egg into a small ramekin. Carefully add to water. Cook until the white is set and the yolk is still soft 3  to 4 1/2 minutes.…